Attracting and Retaining Skilled Labour: Helping Farmers Compete in Today's
Global Economy

The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council discusses the future of the agricultural workforce at a regional forum in Guelph, Ontario

OTTAWA, March 11 /CNW/ - "Today's and Tomorrow's Farms: Employment and Skills Development" was the theme surrounding a regional forum held in Guelph today, organized by the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC).

Agricultural producers were invited to join members of general farm organizations, representatives from post-secondary institutions and Provincial and Federal governments to discuss employment and skills development issues particular to Ontario. The forum in Guelph was the second in a series of regional meetings which will take place across the country over the next several months. The first forum was held in Moncton, New Brunswick, on February 4, 2010, where participants represented the four Atlantic provinces.

"The purpose of these regional forums is to discuss opportunities to attract and retain workers with the appropriate skills needed to compete in today's global economy. The feedback of the participants is instrumental in identifying the human resource needs and best practices particular to each region, across Canada," said Danielle Vinette, CAHRC's Executive Director.

Ron Bonnett, CAHRC Board Director and 1st Vice President of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, opened the meeting by calling for the need to raise the bar on employment and skills development. "CAHRC's Labour Market Information on Recruitment and Retention Report, published in June 2009, reveals that 9% of all jobs in primary agriculture are currently unfilled - in Ontario, the vacancy rate is at 11%. This number represents more than 14,000 people and speaks to the urgent challenges currently faced by one of Canada's most important industries."

Led by industry and funded by the Government of Canada's Sector Council Program, the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council was created in 2006 to address primary agriculture's most pressing challenges related to the recruitment and retention of farm labour and skills training for employers and employees. The work of the Council is guided by a Board of Directors that represents provincial and commodity groups across Canada.


For further information: For further information: or to arrange an interview please contact: Noëlla LeBlanc, Communications Coordinator, Cell: (613) 513-5173,

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